The importance of inviting customers into your brand.
The way people engage with brands has changed drastically over the past decade, largely thanks to social media. Rather than being spoken to, customers enjoy a dialogue with the brands they love. They yearn to participate, especially in an enthusiast category like music industry manufacturing. If your brand hasn’t been paying attention to the vast insights that can be gleaned from a customer dialogue, you may be missing an opportunity.
If you want your brand to succeed in this crowded and highly competitive landscape, your brand must make a customer feedback program a priority.
How can customer feedback help build your brand?
Opening up a portal to customer feedback might seem intimidating. After all, players have got a lot to say about everything, and there will always be the “trolls” out there who are in it just to give your brand grief. However, the benefits of a customer feedback system far outweigh any potential negatives.
From loyalty to advocacy
Your brand spends a lot of time and money building a loyal following. Customer feedback programs help you cash in on that loyalty by converting your fans into advocates. These folks are passionate about your brand. Showing them that you care about what they think is a great way of saying “thanks for your support,” which deepens current relationships and sets a platform for emerging relationships.
Drive product innovation
When players aren’t jamming, they’re tinkering. They spend a ton of time trying to figure out how to become better at their craft. If there’s a hole in your current product lineup or room for improvement, there’s no better source of intel. If you’re looking for that next great product innovation, then look no further than the loyal fans who are using your gear.
Fine-tune your marketing playbook
As a marketer, you’ll always find yourself asking if your messaging and your media mix are on the mark. Customer feedback programs can give you great insight into the best strategy for reaching your audience. The biggest challenge is in understanding how they want to engage with your brand. Are specs important to them? Do they need content in order to make your product work for them? Are they going to forums to make purchasing decisions, or are they still reading the trades? Using feedback to get in tune and refine your customer persona can help brands take some of the mystery out of marketing and maximize spend.
Hit the reset button
At some point, your brand is going to have a bad day. Maybe you partnered with a controversial artist endorser. Maybe the guys in R&D had an idea that sounded great on paper but was DOA upon release. These things are going to happen. This is, arguably, the most critical time to be listening to your loyal audience. Even if they disagree, their input will definitely help your corrective strategy.
What are you going to do with all that input?
In many ways, asking for feedback is the easy part, even if the results aren’t as good as you had hoped. The hard part will be acting on what you’ve learned. The most important part of your customer feedback initiative will be incorporating what you’ve learned into your continuous improvement activities. The ability to listen closely to the wisdom of a loyal and passionate following is a means toward making your products and brand better.